Andrei Svechnikov kept on the attack, both in skating with a physical edge and continuing to fire pucks at the net.
Now he has a franchise first and the Carolina Hurricanes are a win away from a sweep.
The 20-year-old scored three times for the first postseason hat trick in franchise history and the Hurricanes beat the New York Rangers, 4-1, on Monday in Toronto, securing a 2-0 lead in the Stanley Cup qualifier series.
Svechnikov beat Henrik Lundqvist for the game’s first goal less than 5 minutes into the game. He followed with a power-play one-timer early in the second off a feed from Sami Vatanen, then buried a third at 14:02 of the third off a feed from Sebastian Aho — who assisted all three Svechnikov goals.
“I think he’ll get a few more [hat tricks] before his time’s over in his career,” said Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour. “He’s a gamer, too. This guy is one of those players in this break that worked on this game, he wanted to get better. I think you’re seeing that.”
The 6-foot-2 Svechnikov, the No. 2 pick in the 2018 draft, had an assist in Saturday’s Game 1 victory then followed by delivering a game-high six hits in this one.
“I just love that style, just hit hard,” Svechnikov said. “I think I’m playing a hard game. That’s I think why I’m scoring goals.”
Svechnikov’s first career hat trick is the first in the franchise’s 144-game postseason history, including the Hartford Whalers. He became only the eighth player in NHL history age 20 or younger to tally a postseason hat trick, the last being Nashville’s Filip Forsberg in April 2015.
With no fans to throw hats onto the ice at Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena for Svechnikov’s hat trick, the Hurricanes tweeted a photo that they had put several in his locker at PNC Arena back in Raleigh, N.C.
“He’s the whole package,” said Rangers coach David Quinn. “You’re talking about a lot of skill, physical, quick. There’s really not a lot he can’t do, and that’s why he was the second pick overall.”
Carolina defenseman Dougie Hamilton didn’t play Monday after missing Game 1 and multiple recent practices.
Shorthanded Jets soar
Nikolaj Ehlers scored a third-period power-play goal to give the Winnipeg Jets a 3-2 win over the Calgary Flames and draw even in their Western Conference qualifying-round series.
Adam Lowry led the Jets, who had to reshuffle their lines in the absence of several players, with a goal and an assist in Game 2 of the best-of-five series. Rookie Jansen Harkins also scored for Winnipeg and Jack Roslovic contributed a pair of assists.
Vezina Trophy finalist Connor Hellebuyck made 28 saves for the win.
The Jets were without centers Mark Scheifele and Mason Appleton and winger Patrik Laine.
Scheifele injured his left leg tangling with Calgary’s Matthew Tkachuk in the first period of Game 1 and Laine appeared to hurt his wrist in a third-period collision with Flames captain Mark Giordano on Saturday. Appleton was absent Monday after playing Saturday.
After Calgary’s 4-1 win in the opener, Jets coach Paul Maurice accused Tkachuk of having intent to injure Winnipeg’s top center, saying he delivered a “filthy, dirty kick to the back of the leg.″
Tkachuk denied it. No penalty was called and the NHL didn’t hand out additional discipline to him.
NHL: zero positive tests
The National Hockey League says there have been zero positive coronavirus test results since 24 teams entered quarantined bubbles in Toronto and Edmonton, Alberta.
The league announced it had administered more than 7,000 tests to players, coaches, staff and officials over the past week. Teams with 52-member traveling parties entered the bubbles July 26.
There were also zero positives the previous week when teams were still in their home cities for training camp.
Canucks’ Ferland fined
Vancouver Canucks forward Michael Ferland was fined $5,000 by the NHL for spearing Ryan Hartman on the Minnesota Wild bench during Game 1 of their qualification-round series Sunday night.
That’s the maximum allowable fine under the collective bargaining agreement.
In the third period, Ferland checked Minnesota’s Nick Foligno at the Wild bench. His stick went over the boards, and Wild forward Luke Kunin grabbed it, briefly restricting Ferland from rejoining the play. Ferland pulled his stick away and promptly speared Hartman in the midsection, thinking he was the one who had grabbed the stick.
Kunin was fined $1,000 by the NHL for his part in the incident.
Ferland was given a minor penalty for slashing. The Wild bench was given a minor penalty for interference.